Common Name: Andrenid Bee
Andrena milwaukeensis Graenicher, 1903
S. Ascher, det.)
Length: 13 mm
Range: Throughout Alberta
Time of year seen: Spring
Other: Andrena bees are a large and widespread
holarctic genus, with about 500 species present in North America.
Distribution of individual species is controlled by two factors: 1) the
presence of food plants - each species prefers pollen from one or a few
plants only and 2) the presence of suitable nesting substrate. (Laberge,
1984) The bees nest in the ground, with the nest typically consisting
of a single vertical burrow with horizontal branches. (Borror
et al, 1970) The
adult bees hibernate in their burrows, becoming active in the spring.
As a result they are quite common in the spring when they are stocking their
nests with pollen from spring flowers such as willow. (Marshall,
2006) Adult bees have a brownish black to dark brown coloration.